Day 2: As i write this post while waiting for our train to Frankfurt it feels kind of sad that our one and a half days in Amsterdam has come to an untimely end.
One thing it does proves is that a small amount of planning can go a long way. We were unaware that the 7th - 9th June is a national bank holiday weekend in Holland and our decision to book hostels as we go backfired as everyone was full. The Apollo museum hotel was the ideal fall back plan and was very well placed next to the Rijks Museum and an easy walk to the centre of Amsterdam.
The bank holiday also meant that queues at all the major museums including the Anne Frank House were ridiculously huge. We did not let this dampen our spirits and decided to grab some lunch at “Cafe De Reiger” located on Nieuwe Leliestraat on the opposite side of the canal to Anne Franks House. The lunch time menu was a real treat and after a delicious salad and a beer we made plans to soak up as much atmosphere as our time permitted (this also costs nothing which is a bonus).
Museumplein is a great place to wander through. The park is around a 20 minute walk from the city centre however with the backdrop of the famous Rijksmuseum, and Van Gogh Museum and access by tram if you don’t fancy the walk it is well worth a visit.
The red light district was unlike anywhere I have been before. Back in the UK the presence of sex shops, shows and strip clubs more often than not gives an area a bad reputation but here it’s different. The open acceptance of it all gives the area a relaxed and secure feel which is weird considering the amount of stag parties going on at any one time. Places like “Nieuwmarkt” with the adjacent old medieval “Waag” gatehouse are real diamonds in the rough where you can grab a nice meal and chill out only meters from the madness.
The sporadic movement from place to place is likely to continue with only one night in Frankfurt before a bus to Munich. However with a few days booked things should begin to settle down providing we find a route to Slovenia.